Port partners with Alaska Airlines and Boeing to sustainably power every flight at Sea-Tac Airport
Release of sustainable aviation biofuels infrastructure feasibility study first step toward meeting that goal
On Jan. 12 the Port of Seattle, Alaska Airlines and the Boeing Company announced the release of a Biofuel Infrastructure Feasibility Study that assesses costs and infrastructure necessary to deliver a blend of aviation biofuel and conventional jet fuel to aircraft at Sea-Tac, a crucial step toward routine biofuel use in the future. The partnership announced its intention to launch the study late in 2015.
The objective of the feasibility study was to identify sites that could support the receipt, blending, storage, and delivery infrastructure required to supply Sea-Tac Airport with up to 50 million gallons per year (and to double to 100 million after 2025) of aviation biofuel.
As a leader in reducing aircraft-related emissions, Sea-Tac Airport, Alaska Airlines and Boeing set a goal to power every flight fueled at Sea-Tac with sustainable aviation biofuel, which have a lifecycle carbon footprint typically 50 to 80 percent lower than regular jet fuel. Because these biofuels are not produced yet in Washington State, they must be imported by truck, rail, or barge and then be blended with regular petroleum-based jet fuel. Sea-Tac Airport aims to become one of the first airports in the world to offer a reliable supply of aviation biofuels to its passenger and cargo airlines.
What is Aviation Biofuel?
What are the benefits of biofuel?
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The Port of Seattle aims to be the greenest, most energy efficient port in N. America
With that goal in mind, the Port Commission authorized more than $45 million in environmental initiatives and projects for 2017:
- encouraging more people to use light-rail to get to and from the airport,
- increasing the number of electric vehicle charging stations at Sea-Tac,
- offering more sound insulation to neighbors around the airport,
- protecting water quality through expanded storm water management,
- creating a $1 million fund to implement the Energy and Sustainability Committee policy directives, and
- designating another $1 million for community ecological projects in SeaTac, Burien and Des Moines.
The $1 million fund listed in the last bullet point above is intended for the communities of Burien, Des Moines and SeaTac to invest in environmental and ecological projects and programs.
In early 2017, the Port of Seattle will plant about 1,500 native, lower-growing trees, shrubs, and flowers to replace about 600 tall trees that must be removed to avoid interference with aircraft. The new plants will include those indicated in the image to the left.
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Port to test solar power on net shed roof at Seattle’s Fishermen’s Terminal
Solar power is sparking interest among project managers working to modernize Port facilities. One such project, to replace the roofs on the net sheds at Seattle’s Fishermen’s Terminal, will demonstrate the ability of solar, known as photovoltaic power production, to save electricity and offset carbon emissions.
Planners estimate that the solar panels on one of the net sheds could produce 11,000 kilowatts of electricity per year, reducing carbon emissions by 279 pounds. The project could be in place by the end of 2017.
At the same time, engineers are looking at the feasibility of installing solar panels at Pier 69, the Port of Seattle headquarters on the Seattle waterfront, as well as other Port properties. The potential exists to offset carbon emissions by hundreds of thousands of pounds per year, reducing greenhouse gases that lead to climate change.